Fiery Peaks: 20 Astonishing Facts About Volcanoes

1Tamu Massif

Tamu Massif

The largest volcano on Earth is the Tamu Massif volcano located at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. It has a surface area the same as New Mexico making it one of the largest volcanoes in the Solar System.

2Cerro Negro volcano

Cerro Negro volcano

You can snowboard down the active Cerro Negro volcano in Nicaragua on its volcanic ash.

3Sh*t Pot Crater

Sh*t Pot Crater

There is a volcano in Arizona that bears the name "Sh*t Pot Crater," so named because it resembles a "toilet catastrophe."

4Mount Pelee eruption

Mount Pelee eruption

About 30,000 people were killed during the 1902 Mount Pelee eruption in one of the Caribbean Islands because its governor refused to evacuate people until after Election Day. The right-wing government was worried about a possible socialist victory and refused to let anyone leave until after the election on May 11th. It erupted on May 8th.

5Thrihnukagigur volcano

Thrihnukagigur volcano

The magma chamber of Thrihnukagigur Volcano in Iceland is the only magma chamber in the world to have ever been explored by humans.



There is a rare type of lava called Natrocarbonatite, which erupts from the Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano in Tanzania. It's so cold it glows only at night. It's black, but within hours turns white.

71815 Mount Tambora eruption

1815 Mount Tambora eruption

The 1815 eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonseia led to an unreasonably cool summer in 1816, which led to an 800% rise in oat prices, which led a German inventor to create the predecessor to what we now call a bicycle.

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8Mount Etna

Mount Etna

When Mount Etna erupted in 1669, the city of Catania was largely protected from the lava flows by the city walls, which diverted them into the port.

9Mount Pinatubo eruption

Mount Pinatubo eruption

The 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo, the 2nd largest eruption of the 20th century, injected large amounts of aerosols and dust into the stratosphere, reducing the amount of sunlight reaching the Earth's surface by 10%. It ultimately lowered temperatures worldwide by 0.7° F.

10Vesuvius eruption

Vesuvius eruption

The heat from the Vesuvius eruption in 79 A.D. was so intense that the skulls of those caught in it literally exploded by the pressure of vaporizing brain tissue and boiling blood.

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